The Colorado Buffaloes limp into Norman Saturday night desperate for a conference win on their farewell tour of the Big 12. Top help us break down the Buffaloes and give us a bit of a perspective on this game from from a Colorado perspective is Jon Woods from The Ralphie Report.
CC Machine: With Tyler Hansen out are Colorado fans at all excited about seeing Cody Hawkins at quarterback as a change of pace or is it the, "Oh no, here we go again mentality?"
JW: It's definitely not the ideal situation, but Cody is one of the better back ups in the conference. He knows the offense and he won't be surprised by any situations that he may encounter. However, he has some very defined limitations and he tends to make a lot of momentum killing mistakes. With enough talent and execution around him Cody could probably get it done, but most fans are the the "here we go again mentality" with the younger Hawkins lining up behind center.
CC Machine: Speaking of Hawkins, how hot is the "hot seat" on for head coach Dan Hawkins right now in terms of job security?
JW: The seat couldn't be any hotter without Dan being fired. The deal has basically be done, at this point it would take Hawkins winning out the rest of the season, beating Nebraska andOklahoma on the road in the process, to have a real chance of ushering the Buffs into the Pac-12 next season.
CC Machine: Offensively where are the Buffs strongest, passing or rushing?
JW: Colorado has put an emphasis on running the ball this season and have been successful but inconsistent. The inability to run the ball against Texas Tech once they had the lead really hurt the Buffs and allowed the Red Raiders to get back, and eventually win the game.
Colorado's receivers are pretty darn talented, but offensive coordinator Eric Kiesau hasn't been able to get them the ball enough. It won't be much easier to get them the ball against the Sooners secondary.
CC Machine: Give us a quick preview of the defense, schemes and players we need to look out for?
JW: Colorado has two fantastic corners in Jimmy Smith and Jalil Brown that should create some interesting match-ups against the Sooners. Unfortunately the rest of the Buffs secondary has taken a hit with multiple injuries at the nickelback position. Oklahoma will be able to create mismatches when they spread Colorado out.
The loss of Jon Major at linebacker is another killer for the Buffaloes. Major had been the best player on the front seven this season and always managed to be around the ball. His loss creates a weakness in the middle that the Sooners will be able to exploit. The Colorado defense has been very steady this season (even the score against Cal was caused mostly by offensive miscues) but the injuries have started to effect the ability of this unit to perform.
CC Machine: Are there any mixed emotions over moving from the Big 12 to the Pac 10 next season or are Colorado fans ready to just get there and be done with the Big 12 conference?
JW: Not in the least. A very large percentage of Buff fans are ecstatic about the move and are counting down the days until the move. CU just fits in with the Pac-12 better than the Big 12. The largest concentration of alumni outside of Colorado reside in California and the school is excited to reconnect with them.
You can get the latest updates and perspectives on the Colorado Buffaloes at The Ralphie Report. Jon Woods was also our special guest on Sooner Nation Thursday night.